Date posted: 14/10/2020 4 min read

An accountant who dons many hats with aplomb

Rachel Yang CA is the Northland and Auckland region winner of the 2020 Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand Young Regional Advocates award.

In Brief

  • She plans to use her nomination to be a role model for up and coming accountants
  • Working across the public, private and corporate sector has widened her vision of the profession
  • Stepping out of her comfort zone and persevering with time management are her biggest motivations

A focus on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism will be mainstream in the next few years, forecasts Auckland-based Rachel Yang CA who is already experienced in these specialisations.

Yang is the Northland and Auckland region winner of the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand Young Regional Advocates awards for 2020.

With more than a decade of accounting work under her belt already, Yang wears many hats with aplomb, including those of running her own accounting firm, Ysquared Chartered Accountants, that she founded in 2016.

She also mentors young and upcoming accountants, helps clients remain compliant with the AML/CFT rules and volunteers to help women and students from the Chinese community find their professional footing.

Yang says the CA designation sets a solid career foundation, adding she believes in stepping out of one's comfort zone and persevering to achieve more.

"As an accountant, your career has no limits since the degree opens many options," she says. "This is invaluable, especially in a rapidly changing market such as the present. The CA distinction is highly regarded and is almost synonymous with high proficiency and persistence."

Yang graduated from the University of Auckland with a bachelor's degree in commerce and a master's in legal studies, majoring in corporate and commercial law. She has worked for Inland Revenue, Commonwealth Bank of Australia in Auckland, Sovereign, and AIA.

The cross-industry experience has widened her vision of the accounting profession. "I learnt quickly how to adapt to different work cultures," she says.

The role of accountants is evolving quickly. Now the accountant is expected to be multi-talented.

"The role of accountants is evolving quickly. It's already different now from what it was when I started out. Earlier it was just about tax and regulatory compliance. Now the accountant is expected to be multi-talented.

"As an entrepreneur, I do everything from accounting to marketing. I make advisory videos for my firm's YouTube channel. I have also written business articles for social media platforms like WeChat to help Chinese businesses in New Zealand."

She has also created a smartphone app for New Zealanders to calculate how much they owe on goods and services tax (GST) and pay as you earn (PAYE).

Since becoming a full CA ANZ member, Yang has been involved in training and guiding mentees and helping provisional members acquire the professional skills and competencies for full membership.

"I started out as mentee myself, and now I see this as a chance to give back to the community and pay it forward to the next crop of accounting students by guiding them with my own experiences," Yang says.

The nomination as the Young Regional Advocate for Northland and Auckland is a responsibility she is taking seriously. "I wish to be an advocate of this profession and help more youngsters join the industry.

"I am conscious I will be seen as a role model, and I plan to use the opportunity to partner with CA ANZ to conduct more workshops and seminars, especially virtual ones."

Meet the other winners

A total of 11 young chartered accountants from Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom have been selected as the 2020 Young Regional Advocates.

Read more